June 17, 2021

World day to combat desertification and drought: info-secheresse.fr introduces new features and gains a forecasting system to help locals authorities, businesses and the public to predict drought risks more accurately

  • The rainfall, hydrological and hydrogeological data continuously analyzed by info-secheresse.fr is already predicting a challenging summer in terms of drought.
  • It is against this background that Saur and its imaGeau subsidiary are introducing new features to the application (display by natural perimeter and 40% more monitoring points).
  • The upgrade also gains an AI-based drought forecasting function designed to help all stakeholders to manage the risk of drought more effectively.

The Info-sécheresse website is a very practical application of the Saur commitment to using data for the greater good.

In response to episodes of drought and water stress, Saur launched the info-secheresse.fr website via its imaGeau subsidiary in 2020. This free-to-use public service website provides continuous access to qualified and spatialized drought data for all the departments of France.

The service continuously gathers and interprets a full range of publicly available data from the three key drought analysis sciences of meteorology, hydrology and hydrogeology for presentation via the website. Unique in its method, this initiative extracts value from all the relevant public databases to assess the current status of water resources in real time.

It is also the first system in France to highlight the worsening drought situation in mainland France.

Saur Executive Chairman Patrick Blethon: “The data we’re collecting confirms that drought events will continue to become increasingly common in the years ahead. To help us anticipate and manage this risk more effectively, we’re making new technical and digital resources available to everyone via the Info-sécheresse.fr platform. It’s an initiative that reflects our commitment to defend water.”

A system uprated in 2021 to meet the challenges faced by those on the frontline

From today onwards, the website offers a number of new features:

  • New drought indicators that take account of the impact heatwaves have on water resources
  • An expanded monitoring perimeter with 4,000 more monitoring points (the majority of them small watercourses) bringing the total number of monitored points to more than 10,000
  • A more easily legible display of drought conditions. In addition to displaying this data by administrative entity (departments), the platform also offers a more coherent reading of the drought situation by natural perimeter: watersheds and water tables.

This is the first time that interactive drought risk maps based on surface water tables will have been published on a daily basis in France.

These maps outline the 408 water tables vulnerable to drought and show their water stress status:

Info-secheresse.fr monitors the status of the 408 surface water tables vulnerable to drought

Better forecasting for businesses and local authorities

The major new feature introduced by the service this year is the launch of a predictive function available to professional users on a subscription basis.

This new feature uses Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning algorithms to forecast:

  • Water table levels
  • River flow rates
  • Meteorology

Confidence indices and statistical metrics are provided for each forecast horizon to help users interpret the great risk trend several weeks in advance.

Drought forecasting based on the water tables of the Manche department of northern France on July 3, 2021

Press Contacts

Press contacts

Saur – Nezha Korti – +33(0)7 64 43 02 21 – nezha.korti@saur.com
Havas – Sophie Louvancour – +33(0)6 40 84 27 21 – saur-rp@havas.com